Google should realize it cuts both ways.

It says a lot about Microsoft’s approach to customer lock-in that the company touts its proprietary document formats, which only Microsoft software can render with true fidelity, as the reason to avoid using other products,” a Google spokesperson said in an e-mail.

via crn.in

Maybe. But it says a lot about Google Docs that Google’s own spokesperson admits it can’t open Office documents with “true fidelity”. Since Office compatability is supposed to be part of the pitch, that’s a staggeringly dumb statement to make.

The iPad as a productivity tool

Bottom line? My first impressions of the iPad as a productivity tool are pretty good… In addition to Office tasks I also used SketchBook Pro and PhotoGene to both create and edit graphics and photos. Both allowed a degree of sophistication not found in their iPhone counterparts.

Pundits and reviewers alike are starting to realize (some of them begrudgingly) that the iPad is closer to a laptop replacement than they had thought was the case. To me it seemed obvious the iPad could do “serious work”.

I think for most geeks (i.e., the people who write and read these reviews), letting go of a laptop is a few iterations off. However, I believe the fact that it performs respectably for them means it can be a laptop replacement for millions of non-geeks. They just don’t know it yet.

Apple iPad Guided Tour Videos: Don’t Tell Me This Can’t Do Serious Work

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Apple posted iPad “Guided Tour” videos today. They’re all worth watching, but what strikes me most, just as it did during the original iPad announcement, is iWork.

I can’t understand how anybody can watch the videos for Keynote, Pages and Numbers and claim the iPad is “just a big iPod touch”. This device is going to change everything.

Columns, transitions, opacity, masking, photo cropping and alignment, text wrap, charts, graphs, and a boatload more features at the tip of your fingers. If you think this thing can’t do “serious work”, you’ve forgotten that serious work is ultimately measured by results, not how much of a geek or software master you had to be to create it.

iPad Can Import iWork or MS Office Files, But Export…?

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With Keynote on iPad, you can import Microsoft PowerPoint files and Keynote presentations.

And if someone emails you a Pages or Word document, you can easily import it into Pages for iPad — ready to review or edit.

So if someone emails you a Numbers or Excel file, you can easily import it into Numbers for iPad.
The above were nice things to see today in the descriptions of the iWork applications for iPad.

Though Apple had specified iWork on the iPad would open iWork Mac documents, there was some question about whether you could receive an MS Office file (say, via email) and bring it into the iWork suite. Apple answered that question today. 

In reading further, however, while all three apps export in PDF or iWork format, only Pages claims to export in MS Office (i.e., Word) format. This could put a crimp on collaboration. Will it be something they add later?